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  1. #11
    no clinkz 'til brooklyn Nocapszy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lark View Post
    I dont hear that question asked much anymore...
    what do you mean "anymore"?
    i never heard that question asked at all.
    we fukin won boys

  2. #12
    pathwise dependent FDG's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=SolitaryWalker;992304]Human nature is not everything that humans are. Some qualities that certain humans have are not natural and have been artificially developed./QUOTE]

    Actually, in this philsophical debate I hold the position "Everything humans do is natural, because they are part of nature". Artificial, in my opinion, is a meaningless word. Humanity is just an extremely low-entropy kind of natural self-organization, it can't be separated from its source.

    If we say that his actions are part of human nature, it follows that those who do not have this quality, for example infants or people of different hobbies are less human than he is.
    nobody placed a "necessary" logical qualifier on each human action, it's an on-off switch requiring only pertainance to the species, indipedent from actions. Thus, human nature is everything that humans are, but humans aren't necessarily everything that human nature can be.

    Just an opinion, of course. If you disagree with me on the natural-artifical debate, then my position does not hold anymore.
    ENTj 7-3-8 sx/sp

  3. #13
    Junior Member MagnifaSnail's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SolitaryWalker View Post
    For example, a human who has a fondness for metals or for sky-diving is not following an innate instinct.
    Unless I misunderstand this very well could be an innate instinct. True, skydiving itself and the act of studying metals are not things that all human beings participate in but these actions performed by an individual could be an effort to satisfy human nature. The desire to experience physical thrill (rush of endorphins?) can explain skydiving and human inquisitiveness can explain a fondness for metals.

    I agree with what you said, that everything we are is not our nature but as I said in my previous post we are the result of our nature. I also agree with FDG in that labeling some human qualities as artificial is meaningless when these qualities have been developed by humans in the context of human nature.

  4. #14
    Per Ardua Metamorphosis's Avatar
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    Yes
    "You will always be fond of me. I represent to you all the sins you never had the courage to commit."

    Reason is, and ought only to be the slave of the passions, and can never pretend to any other office
    than to serve and obey them. - David Hume

  5. #15
    Tenured roisterer SolitaryWalker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FDG View Post
    Actually, in this philsophical debate I hold the position "Everything humans do is natural, because they are part of nature". Artificial, in my opinion, is a meaningless word. Humanity is just an extremely low-entropy kind of natural self-organization, it can't be separated from its source.
    Lets set a definition of natural. Natural is whatever a human is predisposed to do without interaction with his environment. In this context, natural stands in contrast with learned or nurtured. Exactly on this basis the prominent debate in psychology about nature and nurture came to fruition.

    If you are to accept my definition of natural, I do not think that we still would have a disagreement. Accordingly, our dispute appears to be about how the word natural is to be defined rather than the concepts that can be addressed in a debate where one definition of this term has been established and consistently employed.

    It seems to me that the definition of natural that you have in mind is whatever is possible for a human being to do. As you put it, whatever a human is, is its nature.
    Quote Originally Posted by FDG View Post
    Thus, human nature is everything that humans are.
    I take issue with this definition simply on the account that its unconventional or not descriptive of how people use the word natural. Even when talking about biology and matters as simple as the growth of trees, clear distinctions between natural and unnatural can be cited. For example, a certain small bush could grow to a height of two feet. Yet for example, if you feed a poisonous chemical to this bush, it may grow to be only one half of a foot. Similarly you may feed another chemical to the bush and it may grow to be 2.5 feet.

    These changes are not regarded as natural because the plant needed external influences in order to take this course of action. Simply put, it did not do this by itself, it required a path of development that was not entailed by its intrinsic, natural substance or anything that it was endowed with since the beginning of its existence.

    The same could be said with regard to humans. There have been theories that the natural lifespan of a human being is 30-40 years, yet through artificial treatment or drugs which we now regard as a routinely part of our medical treatment, we are able to extend our average lifespan to well over 60 years.





    Quote Originally Posted by FDG View Post
    nobody placed a "necessary" logical qualifier on each human action, it's an on-off switch requiring only pertainance to the species, indipedent from actions. .
    I am not sure if I understand what you mean. I am guessing that there is nothing to human nature that is of necessity 'human'. If so, this is exactly the conclusion that I aspire to refute.

    Quote Originally Posted by FDG View Post
    :Thus, human nature is everything that humans are, but humans aren't necessarily everything that human nature can be. .
    Well, it seems to be that here you are saying something that is very similar to what I thought you were saying in the previous passage. Hence, you have two claims.

    1. Whatever a human does can be regarded as human nature. Another way to say this is once a human engages in an act, the act in question instantly becomes part of his nature.

    2. At this point humans are not everything that they can be. Thus, what humans are now is human nature. However, what human nature is now is not representative of its potential or everything that it can be.

    This is interesting, but unfortunately I cannot find a passage in your post where you support this view. But perhaps I have missed it somehow.


    Since I cannot find the support for the view that you have offered anywhere in your post, I will attempt to construct one myself.

    One may say that humans are resolutely independent animals. Some scholars believe that every event a human being engages in, is to some degree a result of his exercise of Free Will or independent decision making. Accordingly, he or she is not at all like a plant whose development could change radically as a result of an external influence such as a different watering.

    I don't believe that this view is true, or that every event that a human being engages in is a result of his own choices; however, for the sake of this argument we may assume that it is true.

    On this basis we may begin building a defense of the view that there is no such thing as an artificial human quality. Accordingly, since it is our nature to have free will and we use free will to select every event that we engage in, by our very nature we engage in all activities that occur in our lives.

    I think that this view is also false in this context on the account that its not the case that Free Will is completely natural. Free Will or having an ability to decide what we want to do does not exist within every person at birth. Hence, its not natural. It is artificially instilled within us by virtue of our experiences with the world. For example, a baby who was to be abandoned on an uninhabitated Island would never learn to speak, or even less to reason. Surely it would not develop the superb reasoning skills it would need to be in control of every action it engages in.

    Thus, because our ability to control our lives in itself is not natural or not completely innate and therefore resultant of our interaction with the environment rather than our non-experiential, inborn faculties; it follows that it is possible for humans to have non-natural or artificial qualities. In fact, almost all of the qualities of an average person are indeed artificial. Keep in mind, an artifical quality is one that is not resultant solely of a person's inborn or innate attributes.


    Quote Originally Posted by FDG View Post
    :Just an opinion, of course. If you disagree with me on the natural-artifical debate, then my position does not hold anymore.
    I challenge the view that there is no such thing as an artifical human quality. I do believe that humans have both natural and artifical qualities and have explained my position in the previous paragraph.

    Quote Originally Posted by MagnifaSnail View Post
    Unless I misunderstand this very well could be an innate instinct. True, skydiving itself and the act of studying metals are not things that all human beings participate in but these actions performed by an individual could be an effort to satisfy human nature..
    Is a baby born with an instinct to sky dive? Would it seek out such experiences right away without any prior interaction with its environment?

    If not, then its not an innate instinct but a result of a learning experience.


    Quote Originally Posted by MagnifaSnail View Post
    The desire to experience physical thrill (rush of endorphins?) can explain skydiving and human inquisitiveness can explain a fondness for metals...
    Do all people desire to experience physical thrills since birth? I think not. But suppose that they do. In that case the desire to experience physical thrills in itself is innate, yet fascination with metals and skydiving is not as it is an activity that humans have learned to desire as they have learned that it satisfies their natural instinct to desire physical thrills.

    In short, take note of the distinction between an instinct all humans have had since birth and instincts that humans have developed in order to satisfy other instincts that they indeed have had since birth.

    Quote Originally Posted by MagnifaSnail View Post
    I agree with what you said, that everything we are is not our nature but as I said in my previous post we are the result of our nature. ...
    We may be a result of our nature as all of our learned instincts have been developed to satisfy our natural instincts, however, again, there is a difference between a learned instinct and a natural or an inborn one. For example, I may have an inborn instinct to desire whatever feels good and therefore I may learn to like ice-cream because I have learned that ice-cream feels good, but from this it does not follow that I have a natural or an innate instinct to like ice-cream.


    Quote Originally Posted by MagnifaSnail View Post
    I also agree with FDG in that labeling some human qualities as artificial is meaningless when these qualities have been developed by humans in the context of human nature.
    As I have shown above, some of these qualities have not been developed by virtue of human nature alone. Some of them required a certain kind of experiences. For instance, I now have an instinct to appreciate ice-cream, this instinct has not been developed within the context of human nature alone on the account that had I never experienced ice-cream, I would have never developed an instinct to like it.

    But even more importantly, as I have shown in my response to FDG, we were able to learn or to make choices due to factors other than our nature alone. At the very least, a child needs attention in order to learn to speak or to reason. If he was left alone on an uninhabited island, he or she would not be able to acquire habits that satisfy his natural instincts. For instance, he or she would not be able to learn to sky-dive or to appreciate metals (irrespectively of whether these activities satisfy his inborn instincts) as he or she would not have been able to develop the observational or reasoning skills to discover such activities and learn how to perform them.
    "Do not argue with an idiot. They drag you down to their level and beat you with experience." -- Mark Twain

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  6. #16
    & Badger, Ratty and Toad Mole's Avatar
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    Rather than human nature, there is nature.

    And all of nature from a butterfly to the Prime Minister, is based on the same four letters.

    Yes, our genes only consist of four letters. And these four letters create all life on earth from an elephant to a mongoose, from you to me.

    So there is no human nature above nature for we are part of nature ourselves.

    We are all literally part of the web of life on earth, from a wombat to Madonna.

    And all of us, butterflies, Prime Ministers, elephants, mongoose, you and I, wombats and Madonna, create and depend upon the ecosystem.

    Ask not for whom the bell tolls, it tolls for us.

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